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fish123 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Fri Jun 06, 2014 7:47 am
Hi Alex,

Could you help evaluate my profile:

Female, 27 years old, Southeast Asian

Have not taken GMAT, but get 720 on practice test

Undergrad: Economics major, GPA: 3.8

Passed CFA level 3

3 years experience in a boutique Private Equity firm

Long term career goal: Work at a social impact investment fund or found one.

Target schools: HBS, GSB, Wharton, MIT, Chicago, INSEAD

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Post Mon Jun 09, 2014 8:08 am
fish123 wrote:
Hi Alex,

Could you help evaluate my profile:

Female, 27 years old, Southeast Asian

Have not taken GMAT, but get 720 on practice test

Undergrad: Economics major, GPA: 3.8

Passed CFA level 3

3 years experience in a boutique Private Equity firm

Long term career goal: Work at a social impact investment fund or found one.

Target schools: HBS, GSB, Wharton, MIT, Chicago, INSEAD
A lot of it comes down to your GMAT, how well you execute the applications, and luck. You have enough of a shot at these schools that they're worth applying to, but if you want to be more assured of getting in, consider adding some top 16 schools to the list. It's not really about you (you have a strong profile), but the fact that you're up against more people of a similar caliber/profile than there are seats at these schools, so even with your best efforts, there's going to be some luck involved. But again, these schools aren't out of reach for you - just make sure you score a 700+ minimum (and ideally a 720+) on the GMAT, and do the best you can on the applications.

Good luck

_________________
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elkobo Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Tue Jul 29, 2014 5:12 pm
Hi Alex,

I received your email and am replying here. I was hoping for a quick review of my profile and my chances, be honest and brutal, I can take it!

- Goal: To secure a management position at a technology firm, long term goal of being an entrepreneur

- GMAT: 750 (Q50, V41) in only attempt (not sure if it helps)
- GPA: 3.68, BS Business Administration, Haas School of Business
- Asian American

- Work experience: 4 years of consulting experience at two big 4 accounting firms. 2.5 years was spent in technology consulting, and my last 1.5 years in "traditional" management consulting. 1.5 years of management consulting experience is primarily in the telecom, media, and technology industries.

- ECs: Self funded entire undergrad through scholarships and 15 to 20 hours of work per week, some tutoring and mentoring, recreational sports leagues, helped friends launch a food vendor small business

- Target schools: GSB, HBS, Wharton, MIT, Kellogg, Columbia

I know that the schools are really tough to get in, but would love to hear your opinion.

I am also wondering if you have any tips that you can share regarding one weakness: I'm in a over-represented ethnic and job category, and I don't have top tier qualifications by having a big 3 brand on my resume. Thanks!

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Post Tue Jul 29, 2014 9:14 pm
elkobo wrote:
Hi Alex,

I received your email and am replying here. I was hoping for a quick review of my profile and my chances, be honest and brutal, I can take it!

- Goal: To secure a management position at a technology firm, long term goal of being an entrepreneur

- GMAT: 750 (Q50, V41) in only attempt (not sure if it helps)
- GPA: 3.68, BS Business Administration, Haas School of Business
- Asian American

- Work experience: 4 years of consulting experience at two big 4 accounting firms. 2.5 years was spent in technology consulting, and my last 1.5 years in "traditional" management consulting. 1.5 years of management consulting experience is primarily in the telecom, media, and technology industries.

- ECs: Self funded entire undergrad through scholarships and 15 to 20 hours of work per week, some tutoring and mentoring, recreational sports leagues, helped friends launch a food vendor small business

- Target schools: GSB, HBS, Wharton, MIT, Kellogg, Columbia

I know that the schools are really tough to get in, but would love to hear your opinion.

I am also wondering if you have any tips that you can share regarding one weakness: I'm in a over-represented ethnic and job category, and I don't have top tier qualifications by having a big 3 brand on my resume. Thanks!
Big-4 consultants like yourself tend to be long shots at H/S (those who do tend to be Ivy undergrads, and/or have some notable extras like being a nationally ranked athlete, competed in the Olympic trials). These schools get plenty of MBB/Ivy blue chip consultants, and yet not all of them get in either. Apply if you want, but know that the odds are pretty long.

Wharton, Sloan, Kellogg and Columbia are stretches, but where you at least have enough of a shot that they're worth giving a serious try.

The thing with someone like yourself who has a business undergrad from a good school (Haas, UVA, Stern, Texas, Michigan) is that the top 8 MBA programs are stretches for traditional candidates like yourself (consulting/finance) who didn't work at the top tier firms (MBB, Goldman/megafund PE), but where the top 16 may not be worth it given that you already have a business degree (even if the top 16 schools are sweet spots for someone like you).

So it just comes down to expectations. You're not misguided at all to go with a "top 8 or bust" mentality given your background, but just go in being mentally prepared for the possibility that you can strike out everywhere if you run into bad luck, as the margins that separate one traditional applicant from another are pretty thin these days.

As for how to position yourself, here's the thing. It's not about trying to gain some advantage - there's no "essay magic" or some spell you can cast upon an adcom that will turn you into someone you're not. A big part of whether the adcom will even read your application closely at all comes down to your raw profile (stats/pedigree). Schools like H/S get more than enough Asian-American traditional applicants (bankers/consultants/engineers) with monster stats/pedigree, that if you don't have that, they won't spend much time trying to find the diamonds in the rough - that potential again has to be apparent in the raw profile itself (i.e. you were a nationally ranked athlete, you were a professional ballet dancer, etc). With other top 8 schools, they still get tons, but it's a matter of numbers (most will end up at H/S anyhow) so they will let in more that may not have the same level of pedigree.

It's not about trying to be someone you're not. At these schools, there's plenty of by-the-books folks, and they didn't get in by trying to impress the adcom with a "big fish" story (outlandish story to make them seem different for the sake of being different). Highlight your strengths, don't overthink it, and be yourself. Even if you believe you're a cookie cutter consultant on the surface, that's okay - don't deny that or hide from it, or try and do something gimmicky and silly just to be different. Even if you have a similar resume compared to others, you can still come across as an individual - and no, there's no magic formula or one-size-fits-all approach to get there - why would there be if the aim is to show that you're an individual, and not a stereotype?

Good luck!

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alex@mbaapply.com
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elkobo Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Wed Jul 30, 2014 6:50 am
Hi Alex,

Thanks for the quick reply. Really appreciate the insights. I had another question that I should've listed, and was hoping to get your two cents.

My first firm has a decent number of consultants in the top 8 (excluding H/S), but my second one doesn't. One can interpret this as adcoms thinking relatively highly of the first firm. If that is the case, do I get a similar benefit having significant experience at that firm, even I'm not there now? I don't think that adcoms value my firm negatively per se, but I have heard that they hate it when there's nobody else from a given firm to easily compare the applicant with.

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Post Wed Jul 30, 2014 3:43 pm
elkobo wrote:
Hi Alex,

Thanks for the quick reply. Really appreciate the insights. I had another question that I should've listed, and was hoping to get your two cents.

My first firm has a decent number of consultants in the top 8 (excluding H/S), but my second one doesn't. One can interpret this as adcoms thinking relatively highly of the first firm. If that is the case, do I get a similar benefit having significant experience at that firm, even I'm not there now? I don't think that adcoms value my firm negatively per se, but I have heard that they hate it when there's nobody else from a given firm to easily compare the applicant with.
Question back to you: why preoccupy yourself with something that you can't change?

Focus on what you can control: getting your applications completed, which means focusing on highlighting *your* impact, what you've learned, what you want out of your career and what you're looking to achieve in b-school.

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alex@mbaapply.com
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mathewjohn Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Mon Sep 01, 2014 9:08 am
Hi, I am Mathew, and i would like you to evaluate my profile.

Age : 25 Years, Work Experience : 50 months.

My Profile Summary

2006 - 2010
B.Tech in Computer Science & Engineering (2006 -2010) from Rajagiri School Of Engineering & Technology, M.G. University (Kerala, India) with 74 Percentage.

2010 - 2012
Placed in Equity Intelligence, a boutique Investment Firm (INR 150 Crore = $30 million, Assets Under Management, minimum client portfolio - INR 25 Lakhs = $50,000)

I joined as a trainee, but was promoted to assistant client relations manager, and then as the youngest manager in the firm.

Client Relations Manager (May 2010 - May 2011)

•Youngest employee to be appointed as CRM among all trainees.
•Worked with & learnt in an integrated manner from the Equities, Research & Operations Team
•Part of the research team and created research reports in tandem with the Portfolio Manager.
•Acquisition of Clients from across Indian & Global Markets.
•Servicing of 500+ existing clients from across the globe.

Business Development Manager (June 2011 - June 2012)

•Headed the team responsible for all Business Development Activities (Branding, Advertising, Marketing, Long-Term Strategy, Client Identification & Acquisition)
•Identified a key new business area to attract clients and launched Sharia PMS, which raised Rs. 10 crore capital for the firm.
•Headed the Shariah Team of the firm, Interviewed on Shariah investing by leading regional financial papers.
•Led the Firm’s re-branding exercise and directed the development of the new office, company logo, brochure, website, branding materials etc.
•Oversaw and managed Ad-Campaigns across media platforms (online, print and television).
•Master-minded the states’ first flash mob with 160 participants which provided immense PR value to firm.

2012-2014

Innowaves Media (Advertising & PR Firm) http://www.innowavesmedia.com
Co-Founder & Managing Partner (July 2012 - Present)

•Successfully grew a company with almost zero initial investments to a company with an annual turnover of INR 18 lakhs ($35,000 approximately) in two years.
•Built a brand name by working with prestigious clients such as Mc’Donalds, Sony, Van Heusen, Louis Philippe, Taj, Muthoot, Via, Geojit BNP Paribas, etc.


Equinox Entertainment (Events & Nightlife Marketing Firm)
Founder (September 2012 - Present)

•Awarded a six months exclusive nightlife marketing and artist management contract with The Gateway Hotel, Kochi, part of the The Taj Group of Hotels for their nightclub ‘Swirl’.
•Conducted events with national and international artists in Five Star properties in Kochi, including Beaumonde The Fern, The Bolgatty Palace, The Dream Hotel etc.

Change Our World (Not for profit, Social Organization)
Founder (November 2012 - Present)

•Conducted a Children’s day celebration event for a 1000 underprivileged children in association with Don Bosco, Kochi & Round Table, attended by dignitaries such as the Member of the State Legislative Assembly, Hibi Eden and the Cochin city Mayor Tony Chammony etc.
•Conducted an Earth Day march with 100 participants to create awareness for the Earth Hour and reduce improper dumping of waste in public areas, program attended by various celebrities.
•Conducted a felicitation ceremony for street workers appreciating their efforts and services to the city of Kochi and its residents, gifts awarded by state dignitaries.

Other Notable Achievements

Travelled to Rwanda in October 2012 and met the General and Cabinet ministers of the country in connection with launching a satellite based internet company, which now provides internet to Rwanda, Burundi & parts of Tanzania.

I am also associated with a startup in Qatar.

I was part of my college tennis team and represented it at the university tennis championship.

I have been interviewed several times on television on various business and technological topics.

I am the general secretary of my school’s alumni association.

I have won several prizes in public speaking at school and at college, I was the College debate champion three years in a row and have won numerous inter college competitions like “Best Manager” , “Best Engineer” etc.

Head of Sponsorship and Marketing for the college Techfest, Class Placement Committee Co-ordinator for a year.

Career Goal

I have a couple of ideas which i am working on, but their implementation and execution will require me to not just have a stellar and comprehensive business education but also a brand name that would enable me to raise funds.

I am confused on whether to start off something directly post-mba or work for a year or two before doing so, if I do have to work what kind of company/domain should I aim to work for post-mba?

GMAT Score - 700 (Q48,V38,IR-5,AWA-5) - First Attempt - 6th August, 2014.
TOEFL iBT - 118/120 - 16th August, 2014.

My Specific Question -

I want to study at one of the top 10 B-schools in the world. Is my profile deficient in any manner for such a goal? Can I apply this year itself or should I wait for another year (since average work experience at top 10 schools is approximately 5 years), to strengthen my profile? I realize that in top schools such as Harvard, Stanford, Wharton etc, most students have some international experience, besides having stellar GMAT scores. I know I can improve my GMAT scores by at least 20-30 points, in a months time. I am also considering working outside India for a year to strengthen the international dimension in my profile. Should I apply this year itself with my present GMAT score (since I will have to spend my time preparing essays and won’t have time to study to improve my GMAT score) or should I rewrite the GMAT, work abroad for a year, and apply next year?

Thanks in advance.

P.S. If you recommend working in some international location, could you recommend an area (job profile) to work in/as, so as to strengthen my profile? My companies will be looked after my partners in my absence, I don’t plan to return and work in them since I want to start something else, in a much bigger scale.

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Post Mon Sep 01, 2014 10:42 am
mathewjohn wrote:
My Specific Question -

I want to study at one of the top 10 B-schools in the world. Is my profile deficient in any manner for such a goal? Can I apply this year itself or should I wait for another year (since average work experience at top 10 schools is approximately 5 years), to strengthen my profile? I realize that in top schools such as Harvard, Stanford, Wharton etc, most students have some international experience, besides having stellar GMAT scores. I know I can improve my GMAT scores by at least 20-30 points, in a months time. I am also considering working outside India for a year to strengthen the international dimension in my profile. Should I apply this year itself with my present GMAT score (since I will have to spend my time preparing essays and won’t have time to study to improve my GMAT score) or should I rewrite the GMAT, work abroad for a year, and apply next year?

Thanks in advance.

P.S. If you recommend working in some international location, could you recommend an area (job profile) to work in/as, so as to strengthen my profile? My companies will be looked after my partners in my absence, I don’t plan to return and work in them since I want to start something else, in a much bigger scale.
In short, I think you have an interesting enough profile (you're not a cookie cutter Indian engineer, but have had experiences that are still solid but not as common) that it's worth applying this year if you can. You might as well, rather than just waiting a year for the sake of it.

Having said that, because there aren't as many people with a comparable profile as yours, your admissions results may be even more random than other applicants (i.e. getting admitted to a top ranked school, but dinged at a lower ranked school). Every applicant should expect some degree of randomness and unpredictability, but in your case it'll be even more so.

Here's what I suggest:

Stretch: top 8 schools (H/S/W, Booth, Kellogg, Columbia, Sloan, Tuck) + INSEAD/LBS. Apply to 2-3 from this tier. You have enough of a shot that they're worth at least applying to 2-3 schools, but not to the point where you should only limit yourself to these schools. You'll need a bit of luck, but they aren't such long shots that you shouldn't bother applying.

Sweet spot: top 16 schools (Ross, Duke, Darden, Cornell, Stern, Yale, UCLA, Haas). Apply to 4-5 from this list, as these are the schools where you have a more reasonable shot.

Safety: anything outside of these schools, but whether it's worth it to you or not is really a personal decision. What I suggest is to focus on the above schools, and if you don't get in, then consider broadening your list to include non top-16 schools the following year (i.e. some reapplications to the top 8 or 16 schools, and then adding 1-3 non-top 16 schools).

As for which schools to apply to within these tiers, it's really a matter of personal taste and what you believe are the best fit for you (every applicant is different).

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Post Sun Oct 05, 2014 8:56 am
THREE PRINCIPLES TO REMEMBER WHEN PREPARING FOR YOUR INTERVIEW

With the interviews coming up for R1 applicants, there are really only three main things to keep in mind in preparing for them:

1. Know the key themes: your background and upbringing, where you went to school, what you enjoy, your goals, why you love the specific b-school, your strengths and weaknesses, your proudest accomplishments, key moments when you were a leader, your mistakes/failures, and so forth. If you have stories and specifics for each of these themes, you would’ve covered just about any b-school interview question. You don’t want to get too surgical about it, or else you can come across as overly rehearsed and stiff. Remember that the interview is a conversation, not an interrogation. Since the interviewer only has your resume, a lot of the questions will come from what they’ve seen in your resume (reiterations, follow ups, clarifications, elaborations, etc).

2. Practice speaking OUT LOUD in a very organic and natural way around these key themes. Do not just sit there silently going through your notes. It may feel strange to talk to yourself, but you’ll get used to it very quickly. By talking through the key themes out loud, you’ll find that you’ll stumble through a few points in ways that you may have never uncovered had you just silently gone through it. You might even get nervous or tentative the first few times you do it, but you’ll find that the more you do it, the more comfortable you will be. Remember that thinking is not doing - and communicating is doing.

3. Do a mock interview with a colleague, spouse, friend, family member or consultant (or all of them if you can). A big part of doing well in an interview is focusing on listening and responding, and getting used to talking about your b-school profile in a conversational way (since talking about yourself in a b-school context is not exactly something you’d do everyday) so that you come across as engaged. You want to be talking *with * the interviewer and not *at * the interviewer.

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Post Mon Oct 13, 2014 5:03 pm
DO MANAGEMENT CONSULTANTS HAVE A BETTER CHANCE AT GETTING INTO B-SCHOOL?

In short, consulting does not categorically place better in b-school programs. It depends on the firms.

McKinsey, Bain, BCG traditionally hire most of their junior folks at the associate level (post-MBA), and relatively fewer pre-MBA folks. Basically the pre-MBA jobs at these firms historically have been harder to get than the post-MBA positions. Furthermore, because they are more selective with the pre-MBA positions, they tend to focus more a smaller set of universities to recruit from. McKinsey casts the widest net as they are the largest of the 3 in terms of headcount, but they still focus their efforts on a select group of undergrad institutions around the world. BCG and Bain (and Bain in particular) tend to be even more focused as they are smaller.

So coming from M/B/B in and of itself does in a way help because these firms have done the filtering for the b-school adcoms, who know that these pre-MBA positions are very hard to get coming out of college. And yes a lot of the M/B/B types tend to have as a group stronger school pedigree than you'd find at other consulting firms. Also, and this is anecdotal, while these firms aren't full of God-like superstars (it's consulting, not the Olympics), the quality of people tends to be more consistent, and that's a function of their selective recruiting and where they recruit - just like the Ivies where it may not be full of geniuses, but where you'll find far fewer dummies than elsewhere. In a way, it's not the fact that they went to M/B/B, but their entire profile as a whole: getting into M/B/B means that you probably went to a great school (in the US or abroad), and getting into a great school meant that you had strong academics/extras coming out of high school, which meant that you've developed strong work habits/discipline for academics from an early age, etc.

Outside of that, the dynamics change. For the big ones like Deloitte, Accenture, Booz, AT Kearney, etc. they hire TONS of people at all levels. I'm not meaning to bad mouth at all here, but the quality of people varies widely because of that, all hiding behind a pretty standard and rigid org structure where the roles and projects are highly defined (M/B/B is also very standardized that way, but because the variance in quality of people isn't as great, that very standardization isn't as huge a deal). There's some incredibly bright folks with a lot of potential, but there's more dodos and deadbeats than you'd find at M/B/B -- and it's much harder to tell the difference if the jobs/projects are standardized. Again, they bring on a lot more junior folks at all levels, and to do that they recruit far and wide, from the top schools to the more local colleges.

So for those coming from the big firms like Deloitte, Accenture, Kearney, Booz, Capgemini, etc. it's harder - maybe even more so than coming from tier 2 banking since analyst classes at these banks are smaller than the armies of consultants at these firms (but again that's apples and oranges). You will see a ton of folks from these consulting firms, particularly at schools outside of H/S/W, but that's because of the sheer number of them at these firms who are looking to apply (i.e. a smaller percentage of a large number is still a relatively large number).

And then there's mid-sized firms like LEK and Parthenon - these are probably closer to tier 2 banks in terms of numbers of pre-MBA folks applying (don't quote me on this), as well as the overall caliber: a greater mix of folks from targets and non-target schools than you'd find at the Deloittes of the world (where you'll find far fewer Ivy/equivalent types at these firms). On the margins though, I'd say that these folks have a better shot at the top schools compared to bankers working at tier 2 banks, as adcoms do have a slight bias for consultants for one simple reason: employability post-MBA. Consultants have more options, and as such filling your class with a larger percentage of them ensures that the post-MBA career paths are more diverse (even if they go back to consulting for 1-2 years post-MBA, the kinds of positions they take cover a wider range of industries and job functions compared to finance folks, where a larger percentage tend to remain in finance for most of their careers partly by choice but also partly greater challenges in changing mid-career when one is pigeonholed "the finance guy").

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TW03 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Sat Nov 22, 2014 1:57 pm
Alex,

I'd really appreciate you taking the time to evaluate my profile.

- 710 GMAT. Considering retake as I have done 46q, 48v on a GMATprep
- 2.9 GPA
- BA in Political Science with minor in Economics from Baylor University. Spurned the Naval Academy and Ivy League and walked on at Baylor. Eventually became a 3 year starter and Team Captain as a senior. Regrettably, this achievement came at the cost of a better GPA. Scored a 43 on the Wonderlic test prior to NFL draft, among the highest scores annually recorded. Earned a scholarship and finished career ranked in the all-time top 10 statistically for my position group at Baylor.
- Work Experience: 3 years playing professional football in the NFL and CFL, overcame potential career-ending back surgery in year 1. Last two years spent as a member of the United States Bobsled team, competed in the Sochi Olympic Trials. Currently working in business development at midstream oil and gas company that has been included in the Inc. 500 the past two years.
- Extracurricular Activity: Team representative for Baylor at the Big 12 Media Summit. Coached and trained a member of the 2014-2015 USA Bobsled National team, certified as a CSCS, the credential of choice for professional and collegiate strength coaches (in getting to where I did with football I developed an extensive knowledge of kinesiology, physiology and biomechanics). Volunteer work with local charity that provides physical training to young men recovering from substance abuse issues. Leader of couples Bible study at church. Married with 9 month old baby.
- Career goal: Get into oil and gas consulting, find a way to build a better mouse trap in that field.
- 28 year old male, white, born and raised in Texas

Target Schools:
- Harvard
- Stanford
- Columbia
- Kellogg
- Tuck
- Booth
-1 or 2 out of (Johnson, Darden, Fuqua)

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Post Mon Nov 24, 2014 11:00 am
Hi Alex,

I was wondering if you could take a look at my profile and let me know what do you think and what are my chances of getting into the universities that I have considered to apply.


I am a prospective applicant for a joint MBA/MIA (International Affairs) program for fall 2015. I am considering applying to Wharton,Booth, Columbia ,LSE and a joint program at Fletcher school of international relations and IE (Spain) or HEC (paris) .

Background information:
Sex: Male
Age: 26
Gmat Score : 680 (48 quant,35 verbal, 8 IR , 5 AWA)
Grad school GPA: 3.8
Undergrad GPAL 7.5/10

I have an degree in electrical engineering from one of best universities in India called VJTI and a masters in electrical engineering from University of Southern California. I have been working with a mathematical computing firm called The Mathworks in Massachusetts for almost 3 years. I have worked in the area of partner management , product marketing , technical support and quality engineering. Currently I work as a quality engineer with the statistics toolbox development team.
Along with 2 other people I am in the process of launching a digital media website to provide political/social news in the form of listicles and infographics targeting the youth of India.

Some of my achievements:
1.I was the general secretary of national level Technical event in Mumbai, India:
Led a group of 150 students to successfully carry out a science and technology event at budget of 1 million rupees. Oversaw conceptualization, planning, budgeting, sponsorship, infrastructure and media management.

2.I captained and represented both my school and undergraduate university in Badminton

My eventual goal is to use my expertise in the area of science,engineering and technology to help shape public and foreign policies in the capacity as a consultant.


Thanks for the help
Aditya

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Post Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:55 pm
TW03 wrote:
Alex,

I'd really appreciate you taking the time to evaluate my profile.

- 710 GMAT. Considering retake as I have done 46q, 48v on a GMATprep
- 2.9 GPA
- BA in Political Science with minor in Economics from Baylor University. Spurned the Naval Academy and Ivy League and walked on at Baylor. Eventually became a 3 year starter and Team Captain as a senior. Regrettably, this achievement came at the cost of a better GPA. Scored a 43 on the Wonderlic test prior to NFL draft, among the highest scores annually recorded. Earned a scholarship and finished career ranked in the all-time top 10 statistically for my position group at Baylor.
- Work Experience: 3 years playing professional football in the NFL and CFL, overcame potential career-ending back surgery in year 1. Last two years spent as a member of the United States Bobsled team, competed in the Sochi Olympic Trials. Currently working in business development at midstream oil and gas company that has been included in the Inc. 500 the past two years.
- Extracurricular Activity: Team representative for Baylor at the Big 12 Media Summit. Coached and trained a member of the 2014-2015 USA Bobsled National team, certified as a CSCS, the credential of choice for professional and collegiate strength coaches (in getting to where I did with football I developed an extensive knowledge of kinesiology, physiology and biomechanics). Volunteer work with local charity that provides physical training to young men recovering from substance abuse issues. Leader of couples Bible study at church. Married with 9 month old baby.
- Career goal: Get into oil and gas consulting, find a way to build a better mouse trap in that field.
- 28 year old male, white, born and raised in Texas

Target Schools:
- Harvard
- Stanford
- Columbia
- Kellogg
- Tuck
- Booth
-1 or 2 out of (Johnson, Darden, Fuqua)
It really comes down to one thing: clearly you know what it takes to be an elite athlete; you know what it takes to be an outlier, to be exceptional and/or at the top of your craft or profession. What you need to do then is to show that some or even a lot of these traits, values, mindset, discipline, leadership experience, etc that were the foundation for your success in football and bobsled can translate into a successful business career (regardless of what industry you choose to pursue post-MBA).

In other words, you're basically selling hard on your raw potential in business, based on your prior exceptional record in sports at the highest levels.

If you can do that, then it won't really matter what your GPA is. As you may be aware, Domonique Foxworth was admitted to HBS in spite of a rumored low GMAT (in the 500s I believe). Not saying you need the same level of leadership experience he had as an NFLPA leader, but you have enough in your background that I don't think the GPA should be a huge factor (or a factor at all), if you can convince the adcom that you can succeed based on what you've achieved already. And what helps you is that your GMAT is solid - of course if you are very confident that you can score better without much additional effort in terms of prep, then go for a retake as it may be worth it.

I think you know you're going to be unique in any b-school classroom, and given your background, you'll likely have no problems recruiting anywhere post-MBA (ex-pro athletes and ex-military tend to be highly coveted by recruiters).

_________________
Alex Chu
alex@mbaapply.com
www.mbaapply.com

James_001 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
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Post Tue Mar 17, 2015 5:25 am
Hello Alex, I am doing my Bachelors in India from a state engineering college, I have an overall aggregate of 72%(3% short of distinction). Is this percentage good enough for getting into top 10 B-schools in the US provided the other parameters(Essays, Work ex, recommendations) are good as well?

Also, I have taken the GRE instead of the GMAT and got a score of 331/340(V:164, Q:167). I will graduate from college this year and plan to apply to business school in another 4-5 years(After gaining some relevant work experience). Thanks in advance

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Post Tue Mar 17, 2015 9:37 am
James_001 wrote:
Hello Alex, I am doing my Bachelors in India from a state engineering college, I have an overall aggregate of 72%(3% short of distinction). Is this percentage good enough for getting into top 10 B-schools in the US provided the other parameters(Essays, Work ex, recommendations) are good as well?

Also, I have taken the GRE instead of the GMAT and got a score of 331/340(V:164, Q:167). I will graduate from college this year and plan to apply to business school in another 4-5 years(After gaining some relevant work experience). Thanks in advance
Your GPA isn't going to be a big issue unless it's really bad (you failed a bunch of courses). For folks who went to universities outside of the US, it really comes down to your GMAT/GRE and your university's branding (basically the Indians who went to IIT have an advantage).

As for the GMAT/GREs, they are only good for 5 years - keep in mind that 4-5 years is a LONG time (especially for someone in your stage in life who hasn't graduated yet; you will be a different person by then). Furthermore, in 4-5 years time, who knows where the averages will be, and if you're applying at that time with an older score that by then is below the averages, you may have to retake it again anyhow. So again, your GRE as it stands doesn't really mean a whole lot because you're not applying for quite some time.

In short, you're really getting ahead of yourself - and thinking way too far ahead when you have so much you need to do in the interim that will be a lot more important, which is to build a solid career coming out of university (and the transition from being a student to a full-time professional will also change you as a person).

Don't even think about b-school at this point as it's not productive at all.

_________________
Alex Chu
alex@mbaapply.com
www.mbaapply.com

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